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‘Flood defence plans are in vain unless water companies are held to a higher standard’ - MP

March 3, 2018 10:13 AM
Originally published by Tim Farron

South Lakes MP Tim Farron says that new multi-million-pound flood defence schemes along the River Kent could be in vain if the Government fail to hold water companies to a higher standard.

At the moment, while the Environment Agency's standard for all new flood defences is to withstand a one in 100-year rainfall event, the industry standard for drainage is just to withstand a one in 30-year rainfall event.

Tim has written to the Floods Minister Thérèse Coffey, asking her to amend the new Flood Strategy for England so that it could incorporate an increase in the capacity, performance and resilience of the drainage infrastructure in the country.

Tim said: "The Environment Agency's plans for the River Kent are ambitious and it's great news that building will start at the end of 2018.

"However, the millions of pounds that will be spent on flood defences will be in vain if the Government fail to hold the drainage authorities to the same standard as the EA.

"When Storm Desmond hit our area back in 2015, many homes were flooded due to poor drains overflowing.

"The Government need to act, or they will continue to put families' homes at risk the next time there's heavy rainfall."